Two Dreams, Two Rivers

Dream 1: I can't remember this dream as well. I'm with my dad's dad. He leaves his glasses on the bar. There is a birthday celebration going on. I fetch his glasses. He is making me laugh, and I'm wishing I had more time to spend with him. Someone is faking the depth of a river. Brooke and I dive in and thwart their evil plan to lie to the world. We can put our feet on the riverbed.

*alarm goes off. gets shut off. covers go over my head*

Dream 2: I am in some sort of castle by a river. I am with Dan (who later turns into Jeff). I am making note of the rising river, and listening to some bulletin about the river rising. "It is not!" He keeps arguing in a flat, skeptical tone. We are speaking in French. I notice that the bulletin icons on the computer screen turn into red caution bulletins (in the dream they are pretty scary). They warn of an impending surge. I finally convince Dan to get out of the castle, but he is Jeff now. But he jumps out on the OTHER side of the river. As I frantically look for the best way to get him across, the bulletins go silent (as if the little red robot sailboats that feed to them had floated up and out of range to escape the wave) and it just notes in blue text to get to shore and run with shoes on. People are floating by, submerged to the neck, unable to stop themselves. I begin to run, as does Jeff. The wave hits and I am washed around in the wake. I look back and the castle and entire hill on which the castle sat are gone. I thrash around in the mucky aftermath, and then spot the little mechanical bulletin boats back in the water, surveying the damage. Then I'm in the water, sort of effortlessly floating waist deep. I hear the bulletins calling names of people they encounter or find dead. But instead of the actual people there are manila folders floating in their places, with a script of what was being said that the time of the surge. I start to collect the ones that belong to Jeff. Each time I near it I hear what I was telling him. Then I get to the last one and I hear someone else's voice: the voice of the rescue boat worker that encountered him. I look at the stick figure drawing on the front of the folder in red as the man's voice confirms, "He was shot and killed."

I woke up with a start, my arms clinched across me as if I was clutching those manila folders.


Camper time

I am showering in the back of a truck that has been rigged up to be some sort of camper. It looks like it is actually just a house shower secured loosely in the bed of a truck. I have no clue how it's actually operating; the only thing I'm concerned with is how every time I shift my weight to the front of the shower, the truck tips up on two wheels and swivels around wildly. I can't control where it goes well enough to prevent the truck from smashing into a nearby parked car. Because I am apparently showering in the back of a truck parked in a big parking lot.

I get out to assess the damage, and see that I've left two broad, black dent marks in some grey minivan. At that moment, Chris Wage — a Nashville blogger I've never met (this makes two times I've dreamt about bloggers I've never met, cementing my dorkitude for all the world to survey ... as well as teaching me a lesson about reading blogs right before bed) walks up to me, dressed in a dull, grey business suit, and proceeds to flip out over what I've done to his van.

This is some kind of bizarro Chris Wage, though — one who looks nothing like the pictures of Chris I've seen on his Flickr. Bizarro Chris has tightly permed ringlets encircling his extremely round head, and a red '70s mustache and big, tinted '70s glasses. He finishes his freak-out and the goes away.

I get the sense that I'm there preparing for a competition.


An older couple comes out and looks at the van and has a much milder freakout than Chris. Apparently it's their van I've smashed into, not Chris'. Or maybe they all own the van.

By that time I had stopped feeling bad about it.

Old Times' Sake

From 3/1/03

My cousin Autumn died. She came alive in her coffin as I was viewing her. She climbed out with evil, glowing eyes. She approached me and giggled. "I probably shouldn't have done that, should I?"

I was having a party hosted at my parents' house. From an overcrowded bar I was telling Alicia, Alanna, Heather, Dan, Al, etc. that the Hole singer Courtney Love would be there pre-party. Al and I walked through the halls of his "store," which featured jail cells that would soon hold the arrested parents of the dead children I would decorate my room and dungeon with. The dungeon-like basement had a fiery moat and gas flame strips.

I assisted a mother and father by guiding them to the place their son's severed body parts lay and helping them to sprinkle them beneath the bed and in the basement.

Ryan pulled up and I went into a frenzy of throwing clutter into a closet.

Dan and Ryan enter and go down to the basement.

The next morning I awaken and go to leave the still-sleeping partygoers (excepting Ryan, with whom I conversed) and left for work from my yard in Buffalo on a rainy, dim day in my 1994 Cavalier.

I was then at a Chinese buffet. Declining the meats and fats they offered, and accepting a slice of bread, a cup of coleslaw and a plate of coleslaw, I mentally reaffirmed I was on a diet.


Stay in your grave, lady

This post won't make sense without a little background. My youngest sister has a different mother who killed herself about ten years ago. It was quite an intense event for several reasons, but the creepiest part is that Darla (the deceased) attempted to take my then 7-year-old sister with her to the Eternal Waiting Room via drugs, wrist-cutting, and a drive into the lake.

So. The Dream.

I'm watching what might have happened had Darla taken a different path. She's much younger and doesn't seem to have a daughter. She's thin and healthy and excited about getting a new job. She takes her boyfriend, who is not my father but someone younger, to help decorate her new cubicle. She is all smiles as she rolls out a red and tan Persian rug.

I was just an observer in that little blurb. I once dreamed she was back in my family and everyone had forgotten what she'd done. I was like a child, afraid of her and unable to think of how I could remind my Dad before the whole damn thing repeated itself. She seemed to be remorseful and forgiven by someone with more power than me.

In another dream, she's soaking wet and staring up at my window. The image was in black and white. If I think back over the dreams I've had in my lifetime, I can't recall any others so completely devoid of color.


Stabby McChefknife

My mom and I are peering into a dark and unoccupied storefront in downtown Saltillo. We're trying to figure out what the apartment above the old video store/doctor's office looks like. I had heard stories about the place from my friend Wendy when she lived there, and Phil has even been up there a couple of times, I think. But I'd never actually ventured past the wrought-iron door, up the stairs, and into the old place. Just imagine what it must be like to live right on Saltillo's hoppin' Main Street. At least you'd get a good view of the parade during River Day.

My perspective is skewed. Somehow I am simultaneously looking into the apartment from the street and down and into the old storefront. It's almost like I've climbed on the awning and am peering down through a transparent wall and floor. Soon I'm back on the ground, and my mom and I go inside. It's hard to tell if we've gone inside the apartment or the old storefront.

There is a light on — a stark fluorescent one, which means we're probably in the storefront — and tacky, dull, coral-colored carpet on the floor. There is wood paneling covering everything. We see no furniture or signs that this place is even close to being inhabited.

And yet, this tall, stocky, white guy comes out of the shadows. He doesn't seem menacing, so we greet him. You know, sort of a Hi, how's it going? Sorry, didn't know anyone was in here. But the man says nothing and grabs a knife from the counter. A big one, a chef's knife. We realize that some bad shit's about to go down, so as the man is slowly making his way toward us, I reach past him to grab another knife from the pile — which wasn't there earlier — and manage to grab two — another large chef's knife and a butcher knife — and hand one to my mom. We begin to retreat, but he's right there on us and he starts stabbing me in the gut.

I get the feeling that he's got me a couple of times, but I feel no pain or weakness. I want very badly to stab him back, but I'm afraid of hurting him in such a purposely violent way. So I wave the knife in his face and — this gets kinda blurry — I think we run off through the streets of Saltillo and lose him.

Love Triangles

I was living in a dark, shadowy apartment complex. It was night, and everything was either midnight blue, black, or completely bathed in shadows. Two dogs were chained right outside my apartment door in the hall. Every time I emerged into the hallway the barking dogs would make a ferocious leap at me, only to be stopped short by their chains and yanked backwards.

Dan had two girlfriends besides me, and it was driving me insane. I kept trying to reason with him as to why he shouldn't be dating two other women at the same time, but he just kept telling me date details and how one of them loved him.

So I went out to find two more boyfriends. I felt suddenly exhilarated to be man-hunting. The first man I decided I was going to go out with was Mike Dalton. He's actually married in reality, but in my dream he was available.

And then there was the trainer with the sexy torso - Ken. I'm pretty sure he's taken in reality, too, but in my dream we were both lusting for one another, but didn't know it. We were sitting on a bed, talking, and I looked down at the sole of my shoe and thought how nice it was just to be spending time with him. And then he asked me some pivotal question (that I forgot, dammit!), and we started making out. But the kiss was awkward and kind of bad.

Then it was the next day and I was in some fictitious gym parking lot with my parents, trying to find him so I could introduce them to him. He came driving up in a black Eclipse (with the paint still on). I realized that I should have asked him out or something after we kissed. Then he walked through the parking lot with his bag and his lunch, etc, and I pointed him out to Brooke and Mom. There was some sub plot going on with my family that I can't remember at the moment.


Ribbited for your pleasure

I'm in my old house and there are bugs all over the place. (Lindsey, brace yourself.) Maevis is walking around somewhere and while I'm on my knees looking under the bed I think I feel her lick my heel. Turns out a spider with a full tick-like abdomen has just bitten me. Nothing happens, but I take a cup and trap it and another spider crawling around in my sheets. On my sister's bed are a couple of frogs the color of fresh green beans. I catch one of them in a plastic container and hold the lid on because I don't want to suffocate it.

As I walk downstairs to the front door, the frog becomes irritated and turns a vivid electric blue. I know he's poisonous. I can feel the heat rising from him and I'm afraid of being burned. I open the door and let him go in the pouring rain.

My entire family watches this from the living room and my mother stands up to make an announcement. She tells me I have to go to church tomorrow morning. I tell her to fuck off. She begs me. I tell her I'm 25 and I can make those decisions for myself. I walk to the bathroom to fix my makeup, nonchalant and unaffected by her opinion, still in awe of the frog.


Magical Menstruation

I had a recurring futuristic, apocalyptic dream last night. I can't remember the details (it was long and involved); only the part when I realized I'd been there before. A guy was looking into a fusebox-like fixture and turned to tell me that the menstrual blood of (some type of women, I forget) would resuscitate the fallen of the apocalypse. It would merge with their white blood cells and bring them back to life.


This is a dream I actually had a few nights ago, but I think it's suitable for a debut post.

Last night I had a dream. (That wasn't meant to sound so Raising Arizona but, if you like, you may start humming Beethoven's 9th here )

I was with Brandon and someone else, I think Jessica. We were in on the outskirts of a city which we thought was Memphis. We had Brandon's new pekapoo puppy with us, and he was too busy baby-talking her to help us figure out where we were. We were getting closer to the city and I was getting increasingly nervous about not knowing where to go, or even what our mission was. It occured to me to call Tamara to get Lindsey's phone number and maybe she could help us, since I was pretty sure we were indeed in Memphis (there were no signs anywhere). So I started dialing as we came to stop at a red light. While dialing, I noticed a man walking a lion behind our car. In the dream, this wasn't perceived as unusual. The man turned the lion around and started walking him along the side of the car, toward me. I looked over at Brandon and said, "This lion has huge paws" right as the lion reached his paw into the window and took a swipe at my shoulder. Right then, I reached Tamara's voicemail. I was still trying to act tough and laugh off the pain from the lion's scratching me, and I left a message asking her to please call us back. Brandon burst out laughing and said, "She's not calling back. She's lost her mind." He apparently thought this was hilarious and began laughing hysterically. He leaned out of his window, teen-movie style, wooo-hooing and laughing. So I was trying to drive through this unfamiliar city, repeatedly calling Tamara and getting voicemail, and Brandon was laughing like some crazy person. Suddenly he sat down and got quiet. I decided to call Luke (I don't know why he wasn't on this trip in the first place). I got him and he gave me directions to some friend's house. We got there and the friend, a guy, was watching porn (hetero) and making counterfeit $100 bills. The house smelled like fried chicken and I was getting nauseous. The whole situation felt really nasty and the tv kept getting bigger every time I looked at it, and the uh, action on the screen was getting more lewd. I was shaking my head and saying, "No, this isn't right. I've gotta get hold of Tamara and Lindsey." We ran out and got back in the car and drove to a mall. (?) We were walking toward the entrance and I suddenly had all these dogs on leashes. My mom's poodle, Brandon's puppy, my dad's border collie, and a couple of newcomers. They were all trying to run in different directions. Then this huge german shephard jumped out of nowhere and started attacking the little dogs. I had to get these dogs separated. Brandon and Jessica were just standing there, watching me. Down the street, the man with the lion was heading my way. Finally, Jessica said, "You can put the big one in my Monte Carlo, just make sure the window is down so he can pee." This made sense to me, and so did her car magically being in the next parking space, so I got the big dog in the car and concentrated on getting the small dogs in someone's jeep. Of course, they kept running out. I started crying, gave up, and headed toward the entrance of the mall. Where I ran into a very drunk Tamara and Lindsey. I told them my plight, and they were all, "We'll get you there! We know the way" and beckoning me down this alley behind the mall. I never made it down the alley because the lion jumped on me and I woke up.


Last night I dreamed that someone hacked my blog password and posted all kinds of vagina-centric porn — close-ups of naughty bits shaven, unshaven, unaccompanied, and very busy.

Yes, that's right — I had a dream about a blog. The circle of stupidity is complete!

All I could think about was, are people going to be pissed at me when they open this blog at work and see giant photographs of nature's baby-making gateway? or will this give me some kind of porn liberal edge?

Just kidding. The latter never crossed my mind.



Last night I yelled at people in my dreams for breaking one of my gloriously huge wine glasses, and for eating my crackers without permission. Normally I just sit and meekly worry my way through dreams, wracked by anxiety and fear, but last night I unleashed some anger. It was actually pretty fun. But it sucked because I totally thought one of my glasses was broken.

Here's what happened: I am lugging groceries around with me, when I meet an older black man who wants me to have a drink with him. In his hotel room. I am reticent to do so — since when do I have drinks with strange old men in hotel rooms? — but this man seems nice enough and the hotel is busy enough that I assume if anything went awry, people would be around to help me (there's the fear: always assuming someone's going to hurt me). I reluctantly follow the old man around the hotel clerk's desk and into his room. I notice immediately that the sound of the air conditioner is so loud that it would cover up my screams. I think about telling the clerk to come check on me if I'm not out in 15 minutes, but I keep my mouth shut and begin unloading some of my groceries — including cheese and crackers and my aforementioned big wine glasses — onto the coffee table. I pour a glass of red for myself and the old man, and suddenly some short, younger, white dude comes into the room (it's clear that he works at the hotel) and begins chowing down on the crackers I left in the box.

This irks me. "Dude, who said you could have those crackers?" I ask him pointedly. His mouth is full and he looks like a punk ass ICP fan or some shit. "You don't just go around eating crackers when people have left them in the box! That means they're not for you!" I sigh heavily and look up to see more people coming into the room.

One guy who looks like Mike Barbieri from MTSU strolls over to me, wearing sunglasses and, I think, a red bandana on his head, leans down and whispers a song lyric in my ear. (And I can't remember what it is!!!) It was something completely generic and old and busted, I think. Like something that was popular five years ago but sounds like a joke now. Damn, what did he say?

So all these people start filling up the remaining wine glasses (including the Queen's Goblet) and eating my food. I have no idea who these rude guests are. Nor do I know in whose temporary home I am a guest. All I know is I'm annoyed and I want to leave. So I start to gather up my things and I look down and on the floor is one of my big red wine glasses, its stem snapped in half. I scream, "OH MY GOD! Who broke this?!?!?" and no one decides to come forward. In fact, everyone seems to regard my heartache about this glass with suppressed amusement. I continue berating these strangers for ruining my glass, and I do all sorts of fun mental aerobics wondering about where I can go to replace the glass.

Because it drives me nuts to have three of anything, apparently.


Dream Blupdate

After being without 'net service for a while, I'm just putting all the dreams I recorded into one post.

DREAM, 1/5/07

I pass by a vending machine and notice that in a little plastic bubble there sits a kitty that looks a lot like Sabian. I fall to my knees and examine the little bubble, and ask a passerby, "How did he get in there?!" The passerby replies, "He's for sale." I think to myself that I don't need another kitty, but I can't bring myself to leave the poor thing concealed in a vending machine. I ask how much he is, and someone replies "Nine dollars." I have nine dollars, but someone hands me nine dollars. I take the kitty home and notice he has a hurt back leg.

I am throwing a Halloween party, and am picking through Halloween merchandise at some big box store. Everything seems to be on clearance and mixed with the Christmas items.

I encounter a guy in the musical instruments aisle who has a cart full of wrinkled clothing. He is eying the flute on the shelf. "Is that a flute?" He asks. "Yeah," I answer. He takes it down and plays a sweet little melody. He puts it back and begins to push his cart out of the aisle. There is a silver trumpet perched haphazardly atop the clothing. "Oh, you play trumpet?" I ask. "Yes," he answers, bored.

My Regional Manager Matt Custer has a new girlfriend, and only Lori and I know. We have to develop a code to discuss it. Matt wanders in, glowing, and says that she wore the lipstick she had on when they first made out. He sits on the bed and instructs me in the new language code. "Say, 'Matt, we need a LOT of cancellation forms!'"

I get all the way to my apartment parking lot in my car when Matt calls and asks why I dropped a family add on into the system without FAO proof. I tell him I'll be right back to fix it. I sigh and turn around.

I arrive at a dream representation of our corporate office. Someone wants to cancel their membership, but their only proof of move is photos of their new apartment. I try to tell them how it won't work, but I just keep complementing the furniture in the photos.

I'm riding my bicycle, talking to Matt Custer on a cell phone, when Mike Dalton stops his car right in front of me and I slam into his bumper. I hear him wailing with laughter in the cab, and I amble over to the window to glare at him while Matt talks away.

DREAM, 1/6/07

I owed someone $365. For some reason, I had spent all my money and only had a little more than $100 to my name. I was frantically searching for an ATM that would let me overdraw my account. I understood that no one should see me because some thugs wanted their $365, and everyone was looking for me. I even encounter my Mom and ask to borrow the money, but she refuses. Finally I am kidnapped by the thugs, and spend a great deal of time pleading with them not to kill me. They stare at the road ahead, not caring, and make it apparent that they are taking me to their clown friend's house so the clown can kill me. Suddenly I am in my own car. They are chasing me. I turn through the bottoms and through corn fields and throw it in park by a house. I leap out and magically pass right through the side of the house so that I can slide under this person's dresser. I realize that I have chosen the house of the clown, and there is a gun underneath the dresser.

DREAM, 1/7/07

Apocalyptic rays of radiation have taken to baking the earth in periods of three doses for a duration of about one minute each, every ten or fifteen minutes. Civilization can't figure out how to stop it, but I somehow figure out that the floor mats from the floorboard of your car can block them from harming your body. I curl up in a floorboard, caution others to do the same, and wrestle with floor mats that just won't cover every inch of me. The next sun blast comes, and small triangles of my skin are singed. After the three blasts, I emerge with my floor mats and continue my quest to warn others. I enter my grandparents' house to warn them, but they aren't there.

DREAM, night before 1/8/07

This was a long, involved dream, but I can only remember a bit of it. There were snakes advancing all around me at the Hippy Shack property. I was squirting them with a high powered hose, but this just seemed to attract them. Around us were the rotting skins of every reptile we had slain there, still lying in the places where they met their deaths. This may have been why the live snakes were so pissed at me.

DREAM, last night, 1/9/07

Someone is putting in a community pool at a busy intersection. It has lots of bells and whistles, such as gigantic hoops through which foam footballs could be thrown. People are milling about in the water, giving the hoops yearning glances. But, alas, they cannot use them because the footballs would fly into speeding traffic.

Then my mother and my sister are walking ahead of me down a sidewalk. I know we're someplace around Interstate 40, and cars are zooming past. There's a notion of stress. Mom's wearing a coat. Brooke is wearing a sleeveless black shell. I look down and see that I am wearing a black tee. I wonder why she and I are constantly hot.

Then I'm in my old bedroom at home and Mom is yelling at me because it's messy. She's Mom, but she's really Lori. She refuses to let me clean. She has apparently given me all the chances she's going to give me to clean it on my own. She's picking up great fistfuls of clothing and I'm noticing that most of what she has in her hands are long-lost favorite shirts. She decides that I also can't wash towels or whites. She takes a big box of my CD's. I plead with her not to. She says that each time she has to pick something up after me she's going to take another CD. She starts writing the stats on The Board, which is just like The Board at work, with unit numbers, percentages, and meticulous details of Mom's CD acquisition. I think, "Great, a peppermint bitch at work, and a peppermint bitch at home." She stops short of giving herself a goal. I realize that she can't calculate any percentages unless she goals herself, so I start to suggest it. Before I can say anything, she adds a big $100 to the board. "I'd like to shoot for getting $100-worth of your used CD's." She smiles, caps the marker, and stares me down. I am furious, but I have to swallow it. I think, "Just do like you do at work. Just smile and swallow the hate." She leaves and closes the door. I look around. I certainly am glad that the cleaning's done.

DREAM 1/13/07

I am spending the night with my grandparents in Covington. Dan has come along, but he has brought one of his friends, too. I am trying to go to bed when I discover that they are in bed together. I pull the covers back to climb in and find them in an embrace. Dan yanks the covers out of my hand and seems really angry with me. At first I am jealous, but then I think, "What's the point of trying to save the relationship if he's gay?" They cuddle as I put my things into the bedroom I normally sleep in. D-aw comes in and makes a derogatory remark about Dan's friend's hair. Then it's morning and Dan and his buddy are showering together. Dan comes out and he has cut his ponytail off. At first it looks awful. As I am making up my bed I can't stop discovering pillow shams that are supposed to fit into the pillow display equation. The more pillow shams I find, the further out the pillows protrude from the headboard. Then the headboard (and entire bed) has been scooted away from the wall.There's a big hole that the headboard had been covering, and it looks into a big empty house. A frumpy woman sits in a chair, with no other furnishings, in a pink housecoat as we all gawk. "There's someone there!" I remark. D-aw and her friends crowd around. Mom and Dad are there. "There's nothing in the house," I say in my snottiest Ew-what-a-weirdo voice. Someone chimes in with, "Yeah, she doesn't do much business." That's when I notice a fellow coming out of a warehouse door wearing a yellow hard hat. Then the woman is suddenly at the window. She waves and smiles like the zombie from Evil Dead. "Sorry," I mutter, and start to replace the headboard. "No, it's all right. I get so lonely here!" She surveys my room and suddenly I'm the only one in it. "What are you, a hotel decorator?" She asks with a snide laugh. "It's my grandmother's house," I reply dryly. Then everyone is back and one of D-aw's friends is telling her that someone lied when they said her house wasn't connected to anything, and that someone should have caulked around that hole. Then I find myself in that room, for some reason, and understand that I am supposed to be staying there. I balk at the thought of sleeping in a hotel bed. I imagine sliding between the covers and cringe. Dan peeks in and a strand of hair falls to his chin and suddenly he looks hot. I don't want any part of him, though, so I don't mention it. I peek in and see the view into my grandmother's house. Then a bus is there to pick me up, and I'm running around gathering my things. I run into the casino where Michi is waiting for me to go on stage to collect our royalty checks. Mine is $95,000. We walk back through the casino and I plop my things onto a table to fit them in my bag so I can get on that bus. People keep slinking past and snatching things and I have to wrestle my stuff out of their hands. Some guy is fretting, walking around looking for the chips he lost. I find them. But they are pieces of metal in a key box. I know they're important but I don't know why. Michi's eyes light up. "Give me those!" I hand them over. "What are you going to do with them?" I am confused. They can't be worth more than $95,000! Then the bus is beeping at me, so I run. I get outside, slide open the door to a van, and suddenly realize why I should have hurried. There are kids filling every imaginable seat. To ride, I'd literally have to sit on children. "One sec while I grab my bottle of water!" I shout, and head into another house. While searching for my water bottle I realize that Mom and Dad snuck out sometime during the night to go visit their friends in Middleton. When I finally come back out the van is pulling in, as if they'd left, thought better of it, and reluctantly returned to collect me.

DREAM 1/15/07

I dreamt that I pick up a large, light brown leather bag off a shelf. It's only $20. I remember at some point a woman tried to sell me one, saying that they would be huge and expensive later, but I had ignored her. This bag was ginormous, and hung down past my knees. In it I could fit my regular purse, my lunch, and my workout gear. I went to try on some clothing and ended up leaving with some unpurchased clothing in my bag.

D-aw unwraps a gift from me. It is a perfume that Mom introduced me to. It's spicy and unusual. (Mom only wears patchouli oil.) "If you don't like it, let me know and I'll exchange it." D-aw sniffs it. "I hate it," she replies. (D-aw only wears Estee Lauder Beautiful.) I let her smell my Jessica McClintock. "This smells like honeysuckles," I say. She sniffs it and looks bored. I let her smell my Clinique Happy Heart. "Do you like this?" She sniffs. "I love that," she says, and I frolic back to the store with the perfume she hates to make an exchange. At the counter I notice a white ruler on which my name is written, noting that I had taken clothing to try on and hadn't returned with it. I continued my transaction nervously, hoping that the clerk wouldn't remember me.

I needed to accessorize my new look with the oversized leather bag. There was a jewelry store named Journeys that I needed to find. I checked the mall map. I was pretty close. I had come into that mall entrance before and seen it there, with it's shiny silver chains and gaudy silver pendants hanging everywhere. I walked through the jewelry and looked for big beads and huge pendants. I grabbed a silver chain with crosses on each end and threw it around my neck like a scarf. I walked past several mirrors and studied how awful it looked with my outfit before flinging it onto the wrong rack.

I was running down a gravel road. Someone was with me that I was trying to keep pace with, but I wanted to go a lot faster than they did. It was padded gravel. Mom and Dad were driving around, participating in dramatic shenanigans with Jackie. I enter a house, and the environment is hostile.

Someone is shooting fireworks.


Me & My Gun

I’m working at an upscale restaurant, the type that’s been featured multiple times on Martha and glossed the pages of Town & Country.

Except, it’s obvious that I don’t know what the hell I’m doing.

I just butcher patron’s orders completely. I can’t even understand a muttering Frenchman customer, so I do the thing that comes naturally. I pull his order out of my ass.

“Would he like roasted African fly atop his house salad?” I ask myself while typing his order into the computer system. “Maybe he’d like grilled walrus instead of the grilled salmon.”

When I present the grilled walrus and charred goat testicles to the customers, frankly, they’re not amused.

“What the hell is this? I ordered the spring Chesterfield salad, not some goat’s nutsack,” a disgruntled man says.

“Oops, sorry Charlie,” I say.

I also begin picking unwanted food from the customer’s plates, another service retail no-no.

“You didn’t like your chocolate bonbon?” I ask an elderly woman customer. “No? Well, sister friend, that chocolate bonbon is going right in my stomach.”

I’ve returned to high school for some reason beyond my understanding. But of course, I’m in the high school parking lot with my Dad, my sister, Laura and her friend Deena. You get the feeling that everyone’s graduated from high school and we’re just there for shits and giggles sitting in the parking lot after school lets out.

Maybe we’re just lusting after the schoolchildren? That’s what I’m doing, mind you.

I’m ogling a sweaty, shirtless 17-year-old jock type who straddles the back of his pickup truck with a pack of teenage girls.

“Someone needs to tell him to put his shirt on,” Laura says.

I shake my head. “Fuck that shit,” I tell my sister.

Laura, however, is adamant about getting him to put a shirt on. “Daddy, can you tell him to put his shirt on?”

My Dad does, but here, the dream gets a little fuzzy. I vaguely recall the wa-wa punchline being my Dad gets his ass kicked by a muscle bound teen dream jock and the kids have to track him down in the school gymnasium.

“Do you know where they took my Dad?” I ask a doe-eyed, soulful musician type. He’s barely sixteen if a day.

“No,” the boy replies.

“Do you want to have sex with me?” I ask him. I have a .38 caliber handgun, so this seems a tad threatening to the poor boy.

“Um, okay. Yeah, sure,” he says.

“Do you want to drop your pants or should I drop them for you?” I continue.

This isn’t helping find my Dad, but it sure is a nice diversion for pedophile-rapists in the reading audience.

So then, the doe-eyed 16-year-old and I start making out and groping on the pebble-strewn asphalt parking lot. Just going at it like two dogs in heat. Laura is somewhere in the background, looking on and shaking her head in disapproval.

I remember my putting the handgun on safety, though. God knows that I don’t want anybody’s ass getting shot.

Even though I'm sodomizing a fresh-faced innocent, I'm still a hand-wringing liberal at heart.


Home improvement

I am in a Home Depot or Lowe's-type place — a huge warehouse of doorknobs, shower drains, paint cans, and fireplace screens. Grooved tracks zig-zag their way through the floor. I ask someone (my mom?) what they are and she explains that these big forklift-type machines run on them, from enormous shelf to enormous shelf, plucking housewares from sixty feet up in the air.

Phil's with me, as is this cute guy I'll call Mike. I am looking, apparently, for two things (one is some sort of back support block, the other I've forgotten), while Phil is looking for birthday supplies.

Mike leads the way as Phil and I kind of tag along. He has a list of items in one hand, and with the other hand, he points us toward our destination. He takes us to dark corners of the store that I didn't know existed, and the pilfers through random stuff to get exactly the item I had come for.

I am amazed that he can do this so effortlessly. I grab his arm and laud him gratefully. "It is so awesome that you can find all this stuff!" I say, even though he really only found two things for me. Apparently they were that obscure and important.

Mike seems nonchalant, kind of like he is in real life, but less aloof than normal.

"We Hi-Tone kids only spent $10," Mike tells me proudly, pointing to the receipt. That means Phil's birthday cake and balloons cost something like $100. I remember wondering how the hell he's gonna pay for that.

We are walking out the door amid a flurry of activity — people zipping here and there and carrying giant pots and hauling slats of wood on little rolling carts — when Mike glances over his shoulder to see a woman pulling a rolling pallet behind her very nearly runs over some toddler who's wandering around aimlessly. We scrunch up our faces in a mutual "that was close!" grimace, and Mike turns around and walks backward, facing me, out the door. His shirt said something. But I can't remember.


High school musical

I am in what seems to be a high school laid out in the shape of an H, having a hard time navigating it, despite my crude understanding of its layout. Amber is there, but she's on her own schedule. We meet in the hall and exchange quick updates before shuffling off to our next classes.

I enter a classroom and take a seat. The class — subjectless, as far as I can tell — is being team taught by two women — Mrs. Hudson from West Hardin and someone else I recognized but whose identity, since waking, has evaporated. They are horrible teachers. All we do in during the class period it watch lame movies. The first is a cartoony morality play type thing, about which the entire class hoots because it's so bad.

This kid named Chris Irons is sitting beside me, uncomfortably close, but we are sitting in a circle and somehow, over the course of the movie, I don't realize that he is getting closer and staring down my shirt (the brown empire waste one), with his head practically resting on my shoulder. I notice this and reflexively smack the shit out of his face, sending a whip-crack reverberating throughout the room. People who didn't see my lightning-fast reflexes are all, "What was that?!?"

"Sorry dude, but that's not cool," I tell Chris. He seems sufficiently embarrassed.

I am getting increasing annoyed because no one is paying attention to the stupid movie and everyone's being rowdy and disrespectful to the teachers (even if they are totally incompetent). There are some girls up front that are tossing around these Chinese New Year flying top toys that hover into the class. I catch a couple and toss them to one of the teachers, and she puts them inside a big box of confiscated toys.

Mrs. Hudson dims the lights and puts on the next movie. She sits in a desk near me and turns to the kid behind her and says, "This one's a little Jewy."

I am geninely shocked and ask her to repeat herself. She does, without flinching.

I can't sit through the next movie because the class is so annoyingly rowdy. I turn to the door and see my family there, leaning in, watching the goings-on. I gather up my books, walk over to where both teachers are now sitting, ask them if we have any homework ("No, just relax, get settled in!") and walk out, relieved to get away from the immature nutjobs around me.

My family has gone to sit at a picnic-style table in a common area of the school. They must be waiting for me. I dread talking to them about the ridiculous class experience I just had; I suspect that my dad will say "that's why women don't make good teachers; they're not authoritative enough" or something to that effect.

I'm listening to my iPod and a Lucero song is on while I duck into the bathroom to collect myself. I'm looking in the mirror, studying my face, when Phil calls (or, more accurately, beams his thought transmission into my head, because I don't recall actually talking on the phone) from somewhere and says that he recorded what Ben Nichols (Lucero's lead singer) said last night and today he's putting it to music. Or something.

I wake up with "Hate and Jealousy" in my head.


Zombie Gonzo

We are at some sort of food place where there's barbecue or sausage links or something involving pork you can eat for breakfast. It's Christmas Day (or some sort of holiday) so we feel bad about ordering and making the people there work.

The ferrets are there, too, and they're scuttling around, playing. We are aware that Gonzo isn't alive, but he's sure as hell there, nipping at Felix and hopping around making clucking noises.

The details are sort of lost. But it was good to see him again.



I'm working at Kroger and ducks are allowed to use our bathroom. Unfortunately, they're leaving toilet paper all over the place and making a huge mess. I go to the manager and ask if we could please move the toilet paper dispensers higher up on the wall so the ducks can't reach.

"Ducks don't even need toilet paper," I say.

While I'm waiting for him to take action, I roam the aisles studying colorful cereal boxes and cup after cup of flavored yogurt.


Running From Commitment

I'm having problems remembering my dreams from last night.

I was with Seth T. and we were in a cozy setting, chatting and hanging out. We hung out for a long while before I remembered our past and decided to tell him how glad I was that he had gotten clean and stopped taking oxy-contin and heroin. He was teaching now and was totally functional and successful, and I wanted to recognize that verbally. But our visit was going so well and I didn't know how to bring up his serious past drug addiction without ruining the vibe.

I was at work, talking to Lori about taking my friend Sarah T. to hang out. Lori kept suggesting straight places, and I nodded politely, not wanting to tell her I was seeing Sarah T. Lori said that she and a friend were going out tonight, too.

Then Sarah T. and I were going to hang out. I was trying to talk her into going to a gay bar. We had been seeing each other secretly for a while, and I wanted to go somewhere where we could be open. First I ended up taking her to see some ancient ruins. We wandered through, and at some point I spun around and realized that all the ivy-covered remains combined made up something incredible that I recognized, but I can't remember what that was now. Then my Dad came be-bopping up the hill in a tie-dyed tee, swinging his keys and grinning. He ducked into the arch of a statue.

Then I was at the gay bar with Sarah, but it was more like a redneck restaurant. As Sarah and I wandered through the packed booths, to my horror I noticed Lori sitting in a booth with four others. As I passed I said, "Oh, my god! Nice suggestions!!!"

I looked around and noticed some old ladies were there. They were dancing and having a swell time, and I reflected on how most women I knew that were that age would think you would go to hell for dancing at a gay bar. Then I thought one of them might have a gay friend. Then I thought that having just one gay friend could send all that homophobic Bible-thumping straight down the toilet. I thought maybe everyone should have just one gay friend.

Then I was there with a guy named Clifton, who is not the Clifton I went to high school with. We were slow-dancing, sort of, and I felt like a country woman slumping barefoot in horse manure and cat pee. Then my grandpa walked in, followed by a string of people, one of which was my Dad - in a yellow tee, swinging his keys and grinning.

Clifton was arguing with me about telling people we were dating. I thought we were just having sex, but he wanted to actually date and tell people. I was horrified because he was ugly, and I couldn't bear for people to think we were a couple.

Lori sat me down in a booth and asked, "Why can't he just agree to have sex?!" She was dumbfounded. "I don't know!" I lamented.

Then Lori and I were jogging through an abandoned mall. It had been vacant for years and years, judging from the ruin it was in. There was no trace of the commercial sparkle that had once filled it. It was dark and musty and all that was left was a maze of doors. We were jogging through the doors when suddenly I realized that we were being chased by someone. I led the way up a set of filthy, carpeted stairs and turned into a room of the very people we were trying to avoid. I started fighting them back, but Lori turned and fled. "Lori, don't leave me!" I called hysterically, but she was gone. I threw objects at my antagonists to keep them back as I edged toward the door. I had fought them all down when I heard someone that I knew was bad ascending the stairs. There was nowhere to hide, but I lay down in a shadow. Lucas Parris came barreling in and started ripping things out of the way, much like Michael Myers flipping the tables in Halloween: H20. He got very close a few times, but when he finally saw me I kicked the shit out of him and we engaged in a fistfight. I ran down the stairs and started shutting doors to check for locks. None had them. Each time I paused to scan for a latch Lucas got a little closer behind me. Finally, at the last door, a lock appeared and I turned it. The fact that the doors were glass did not bother me. I tore down the hall, leaving him behind.

Then I was in a large store that was filled with crap I would never buy. I kept browsing and looking urgently for something I might enjoy, but nothing at all appealed to me. Then I found a little novelty box, much like they sell by the registers at book stores, but the name was a clever reference to the vagina. On the box top was a picture of a woman in lingerie, crouching and holding a wish-bone (the shape of the whole clitoris?). I broke it open and discovered a creamy lubricant in a lip-balm like pot (perfect for purses!), a keychain vibrator, and flash cards featuring vaginal trivia. I realized that all the boxes had been broken into and the last piece stolen (a Transformer that changed from a lip-gloss compact into a dildo? Who knows?).